Reporting Mike Hellgren
NEW CASTLE, Del. (WJZ) — Unraveling a mystery after a powerful former presidential advisor is murdered. For the first time, his widow and son speak about the investigation.
Almost five months have passed since police found Jack Wheeler’s body in a landfill. In a revealing new interview, his family speaks candidly about the case and surveillance video showing some bizarre behavior.
Mike Hellgren has been following the investigation for months and has the new clues.
For one, Wheeler’s widow says he was bipolar but had been regularly taking his medicine. She is still struggling to understand what happened to him and whether he was targeted.
Video of Jack Wheeler–a powerful former presidential advisor looking dazed and holding his shoe in his hand–was captured hours before his death. His body turned up in a landfill in Delaware.
Authorities say he was likely beaten to death. But almost five months later, they’ve made no arrests.
His widow and son spoke to the Wilmington News Journal about the case.
“It’s almost not the emotional aspect,” said Katherine Klyce, widow. “Just sort of dealing with this whirlwind, this bizarre whirlwind.”
In late December, Wheeler traveled through Maryland by train from Washington to Wilmington near his home. His widow says he was supposed to meet her for a wedding.
“By Friday, I was getting worried,” Klyce said. “Your brain shuts down, and you don’t really believe it.”
Of the surveillance video, she says, she doesn’t think he was acting abnormally.
“I read that he was disoriented and that sort of thing, but he wasn’t,” she said.
It’s unclear why Wheeler never got back on the train. His wife said she did see the body after the mortician made it up, and he did have some bruising on his face, his head was swollen, and she thought the majority of the fatal blows were to his torso.
She also revealed police found her husband’s Rolex and West Point class ring on his body. She doesn’t think he was robbed.
But was he targeted? Working for three presidents and helping create the Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial, Wheeler made some enemies, his wife said, but none who would kill him. Yet, in the video she says it appears he may have been running from something.
“I think he was afraid,” Klyce said.
Another bizarre discovery: neighbor Robert Dill said he found Wheeler’s home in disarray shortly before his death.
“It’s something we can’t even believe,” Dill said. “This kind of stuff doesn’t happen.”
Wheeler’s family says they think about him every day and hope by speaking out a new clue will come in to solve this case.
“No one ever expects it to happen,” said John Wheeler IV, son.
“It can’t go unsolved,” said Klyce.
The owner of a restaurant who saw Wheeler hours before his death told the News Journal that Wheeler looked homeless, wearing a filthy white dress shirt and no coat in freezing temperatures.
Wheeler’s widow also told the paper that police gave her conflicting accounts about whether her husband had a heart attack after he was beaten.